When I think about comfort food, I think about mashed potatoes, burgers on the grill, steaks, and creamy casseroles. It’s the kind of food you bring to a barbecue to share or you serve up a few dishes on a holiday. Filling, flavorful, and packed with calories! You can make a few healthy swaps to turn your favorite comfort food dishes into a new dish that is still tasty enough to share. Try these ideas to serve healthier dishes your entire family can enjoy. How to Serve Healthier Comfort Food Dishes
Get rid of sugar.Look for sugar hiding in your favorite ingredients including mayonnaise, pasta sauce, and ketchup. Sugar can be found in almost EVERYTHING, and it is always better to read your ingredients label thoroughly and see what is truly inside. Look for items at the grocery that are organic, all-natural, or offer no additional sugar. I have a favorite Paleo mayo that my local grocery stores sells that is just lemon juice, olive oil, and eggs. It is SO much better than those other brands too without all that added junk.
Swap potatoes for cauliflower.Try cauliflower instead of regular white potatoes for your own variation of mashed potatoes. Cauliflower has a great consistency that can be similar to potatoes when put through a food processor, plus it looks almost just like the real thing. Add your favorite seasonings like garlic and parsley, and your family will never know. You can also make cauliflower tots or biscuits instead of using potatoes or bread. The options are endless.
Skip bread.You don’t have to be on a low-carb diet to appreciate the benefit of not adding bread to every meal. Some of my favorite burgers go bunless with large leaves of romaine lettuce or I turn tacos into delicious appetizers by using lettuce cups. Your guests won’t even miss it.
Adjust your casseroles.If you’re making a casserole, swap ingredients for healthier options like using a lower-sodium cream of mushroom soup. You can also add extra vegetables for flavor and increase the overall health factor.
Serve up a big salad.If your main course is packed with calories, encourage your family to enjoy a large side salad before their meal. This will help keep your guests more full, and they will be less likely to overindulge when it is time for dinner.
Avoid appetizers.Comfort food is SO filling, you probably don’t need any other menu items. Skip the appetizers and go right into the main course. Everyone will be full without all those extra calories.
Lighten up your favorite dishes.One of my favorite easy meals is chicken parmesan, but it is not exactly the best for you. Make it healthier by using egg whites instead of full eggs and swap cheese for a low-fat option on top. You can use zucchini to make your own “zoodles” with a spiralizer instead of using spaghetti noodles. If you’re not daring enough to get rid of noodles completely, try a whole wheat or vegetable noodle option.
Do you have a healthy meal swap idea? What’s your favorite comfort food?
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